Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Meet My Backpacking Folks

I herded them past the terminal fee ticketing booth with much tribulation. They were fussing about the immigration form they had to fill out (and whinging about the travel tax and terminal fee even if they did not pay themselves). It was not my sister's first time to fly overseas and she patiently assisted my folks while I dealt with mine, the hubby's and my daughter's.

The Venetian, Macau. Taking them to a trip overseas is the most gratifying feeling.

We were at Diosdado Macapagal International Airport in Clark about two months ago, more than two hours early for our flight since we anticipated that something like this would happen. Plus I consulted and asked immigration officials which of our baby Luna's passports would be more convenient to use for the trip. She's unofficially a dual citizen and it was her first time to go abroad as well.

There were heaps of bickering within the group. You know when parents are being difficult because they're trying to not be difficult? Case in a point: When mom says she can lug her baggage herself when she looks like her arms are about to fall off or when dad promises he can still walk even if he already feels like passing out. Yes, they're in that old-ish stage where they just try so hard to prove their worth. And they always, always refuse to accept help.

"Dati kami nagtuturo sa inyo magsulat, ngayon kami na tinuturuan. (We were the ones teaching you how to write before, now you're the one teaching us)", mom exasperatingly said while jotting down her details.

Looking at these already makes me feel exhausted.

It was not the first time I took them on a vacation. My sister and I dragged them before to Puerto Galera's White Beach to celebrate New Year's Eve. It was 2004, and three countries were just hit with destructive tsunamis days prior our trip. Amidst my parents' paranoia, with our encouragement, they braved the beach. Mom enjoyed picking shells (and we had an argument about that "take nothing but pictures" thing) and buying trinkets while dad enjoyed his bottle of ice cold beer at the bar with a book. We constructed a lot of fun memories.

Almost seven years have passed, and us four were/are rarely together.

Because my hubby and I were about to leave the country (for an indefinite time) with our baby, we thought it would be nice to have a grander farewell celebration. Also, my dad has just fully recovered from being hospitalized for days, we wanted to give him a very special treat. By the way the trip was a surprise for them, they didn't even have passports yet when we booked the tickets.

Macau was my choice. My hubby would not have picked it because it's pricier than our other options. My reason for which (aside from the fact that we haven't been there) is that its environment is remarkably different from other countries in South East Asia. More organized transport system, cleaner streets, European-inspired heritage buildings, and opulent hotels. I assumed it has that 'wow' factor that will make them feel that indeed, they are not on Philippine territory anymore.

Sis helping dad with his Macau immigration form. Dad seemingly spaced out, probably couldn't believe he's finally flying out of the country. Baby Luna slept through her first airplane ride!

So did they like it? Let's just say that Macau changed them. And it's actually not the place per se, but traveling overseas as a whole. Their experience also changed the way they see through me, and what they think of me as a travel junkie... and they finally understood why we were embarking on a long journey soon to live in different cities. They have discovered the educational benefit of displacement.

More importantly, our short holiday bunched us all closer together. Something we desperately needed.

Of course we had a few dismal kinks during our three-day stay. Well, my mom and I almost always engage in a hot debate five minutes into speaking with each other - So that's one. Dad had diarrhea, which he already was suffering from even before arrival. Sister just wanted to sleep all the time. And... we fought many times about them not drinking water from the dispenser at the dingy hotel we stayed at (and let me tell you, they drink unfiltered water from a deep well via a rusty water pump in their province - let me tell you also that bottled water is expensive like anything else in Macau).

Okay, so maybe I am overreacting about the last matter. But hey, we're a dysfunctional functional family, perhaps like any "modern family". I shall reveal more of our bizarre disceptations soon... for this post kicks off my Macau series.

I know, I got too many series with intermittent posts.

PS Mom's now nagging me about the next trip.


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Anonymous said...
July 11, 2011 at 6:45 PM

I can't wait to take my folks on an out of the country trip financed by my burgeoning coke and green business! *sarcastic of course* ;)

Luna looks great! :D

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 11, 2011 at 6:52 PM

It felt sooo good Lauren! I'm sure you would be able to take them abroad also one day, somehow ;p

Mel said...
July 11, 2011 at 6:58 PM

Aw. Dream ko din to take my folks to travel and a well-deserved break. And yes, I'm expecting the same bickering and gulo that makes the trip worth it. :D

You look a lot like your dad. Or maybe its the facial profile. :)

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 11, 2011 at 7:01 PM

Oh yeah, Mel! I do look like him on that photo. Haha! Good luck on turning that dream into reality :)

Chyng said...
July 11, 2011 at 7:57 PM

Good job Gay. I would like to treat my parents for a vacation abroad, but all I can afford now are the tickets and airport taxes! =)

Micamyx|Senyorita said...
July 11, 2011 at 8:02 PM

Dati palagi kami nagro-roadtrip nina Mama and Papa, pero since Papa is with Papa Jesus na and Mama is in the UK, sina Lolo at Lola na lagi kong kasama magbyahe :D Mebbe i should write about it one of these days. Yung subic trip namin :D

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 11, 2011 at 8:30 PM

Chyng, hahaha! Di man lang umabot sa terminal fee? Seriously... tagal kong pinag-ipunan yun. When I worked overseas a couple of years ago, that was my target :)

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 11, 2011 at 8:31 PM

Mica, great idea for a post. Will wait for that. I love stories about families traveling together.

lakwatsera de primera said...
July 11, 2011 at 8:46 PM

In fairness Macau ang first trip abroad ng parents mo, mas maappreciate nga nila yan kesa Vietnam or Indonesia para di nila isipin na parang nasa Pilipinas lang. Sa Bangkok ko dati unang dinala ang nanay ko, hayun nagka temple overload yata :)

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 11, 2011 at 9:04 PM

Yeah Claire, saw your photo with your mom on an elephant. Hihi. Oks lang temple overload, nag-enjoy naman ata sa shopping ;p

Markyramone said...
July 11, 2011 at 10:01 PM

Yes, taking the folks on a trip is a great feeling. Haven't done that yet as my mom wants to travel with my aunts and her kumare. But hope I could join them too someday.

chino said...
July 11, 2011 at 10:03 PM

Sana I could treat my parents din in the future... Mukhang masaya....

Supertikoy said...
July 11, 2011 at 10:42 PM

hahaha ang kulit.. i tried asking my parents once if they want to join me on a backpacking trip but failed ang akong attempt...siguro hahanap ako ng isang lugar na pwede talaga sila since my dad is already half metal half human lol

Aleah said...
July 12, 2011 at 12:01 AM

Luna looks so cute (paulit-ulit na lang hehe). If ever I take my parents out of the country, it would be to BKK. My mother's a shopaholic and I bet she would go absolutely crazy shopping over there!

Renevic said...
July 12, 2011 at 12:59 AM

This is one of my wish list. Bring my family on travel, my target, Sg. Nice post, lovely.

Kate said...
July 12, 2011 at 2:01 AM

You are so sweet to plan this trip with your family :) Btw, Luna is so cute talaga!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 12, 2011 at 5:26 AM

Marky, yeah! If you cannot take her, ikaw na lang sumama sa lakad nila. Or maybe she'll eventually join you, depends on the destination.

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 12, 2011 at 5:37 AM

Chinchan, it is indeed fun... in a chaotic way ;p

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 12, 2011 at 5:41 AM

Jerome, haha! Look for a destination that's friendly to daddy. I'm sure there should be heaps.

Eileen said...
July 12, 2011 at 5:54 AM

Great post, Gay! I have a draft brewing that is sort of polar opposite naman nito.

I could never play travel agent/tour guide with my mom and stepdad when on travel. LOL

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 12, 2011 at 6:03 AM

Aleah, paulit ulit na ba? Haha! Next time pwede mo naman sabihing ako ang cute for a change. Lol. Yeah, I remember you telling me that. Mahilig din si mama magshop, pero sa Divisoria na lang sya ;p

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 12, 2011 at 6:06 AM

Renevic, SG's a nice place too if it's their first time to fly overseas. It was one of our options but we chose Macau because like I said, we haven't been there. Hihi.

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 12, 2011 at 6:07 AM

Thanks, thanks Kate!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 12, 2011 at 6:27 AM

Eileen, really? Haha! Now I'd love to hear about that!

Gabe Mitra said...
July 12, 2011 at 2:26 PM

Ang behave ni Luna...kapag tulog. Cutie patuti!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 12, 2011 at 2:30 PM

Gabe, like me! like me!

cherrey said...
July 12, 2011 at 3:14 PM

It's quite an adventure dragging your parents along. :-) At least for a change right.. And bonding time!

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 12, 2011 at 3:26 PM

Yes Cherrey. A different kind of adventure!

roman leo reyman said...
July 15, 2011 at 9:30 AM

It was such a wonderful treat! I'm looking forward to do the same to my parents and brother.

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 15, 2011 at 10:12 AM

Good luck in achieving that goal soon Roman :) Lemme know all about it!

Tala said...
July 19, 2011 at 11:18 PM

Traveling with family is way too cool but way too stressful either hahaha!!! My Dad, kid bro and I backpacked for 10 days through Malaysia-Thailand-Singapore-Malaysia and it was awesome!!! But my kid bro and my Dad were at each other's throat half the time hahaha! It paid that I left my bull headed self with my Dad in the Philippines. But I must say, getting lost in translation, discovering a turn and a secret spot and eating at side-street eateries were 100% more fun with them than what I had with my friends:) Nothing beats backpacking with family :)

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 20, 2011 at 6:44 AM

Haha! Glad you had a smashing time with the family, Tala! Such experience is just incomparably cool!

Anonymous said...
July 25, 2011 at 4:53 AM

iba talaga pagmagulang mo yon kasama sa biyahe lalo na pag may edad na... nakakainis na nakakatuwa lalo pa parang bata sila minsan may tantrums. haha

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
July 25, 2011 at 6:51 AM

Lol at "parang bata sila minsan may tantrums". That is so true!

Gladys/ByahengBarok said...
August 7, 2011 at 5:57 PM

haha! i so know the feeling of bringing parents to trips! :)

Malditang "Kura"cha said...
August 8, 2011 at 10:02 AM

You never realize how crazy your family is until you start to describe them to someone else. hahah! Backreading lang.. Ganyan din parents ko kaya tawang tawa ako. pasaway moments.

Pinay Travel Junkie said...
August 8, 2011 at 3:24 PM

So true!

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